What female role models do you point young women towards? Little Mix who won the X Factor on Sunday want to follow in the steps of the Spice Girls and are already talking about bringing out a range of clothing, selling dolls in their image and making their own TV show. Young women won't have any trouble following their story; it takes a bit more work to provide a wider range of female role models, and here are two suggestions.
Alex Crawford is the Sky News special correspondent who was the only reporter to ride with the Libyan rebels into Tripoli. The Guardian has a really interesting interview with her today, and there'll be a documentary about her year on Sky over Christmas. She has only been a foreign correspondent since 2005, and her husband, racing journalist Richard Edmondson, gave up his job to move to India with her to look after their four children on her first posting. He says about her, 'When Alex told me she had landed the India job I tried not to let her see me gulp. I had enjoyed a fabulous run at the Independent, but I had seen this look in Alex's eye before. We were off. There are elements of Alex's character which frighten some people, especially men. But she doesn't scare me – a point I once made to her through a crack in the door. The reality is that she has come to this foreign life late and has no time to waste.'
And then Helen Skelton, the Blue Peter presenter who broke two world records when she kayaked 2,010 miles down the Amazon in 2010, is undertaking another Sport Relief challenge in 2012 when she is travelling 500 miles across Antarctica in a bid to reach the South Pole by ski, by kite and by bike. More details about her challenge here. She said she did the kayak trip 'because of the children who watch Blue Peter. They write in every day about what I’m wearing and so on but, since we started this, they’ve been asking how to get involved with Sport Relief. I’ve been overwhelmed by how excited they’ve become. It’s not about raising my profile, it’s about doing something cool the kids respond to.'